Village to offer subsidies for childbirth

2024-05-22 18:23:24China Daily Editor : Mo Honge ECNS App Download

In an effort to increase its birthrate, Bangdong village in the Panyu district of Guangzhou, Guangdong Province, has come up with a subsidy plan to encourage childbirth.

According to the plan, couples in the village who give birth to a second child will receive 10,000 yuan ($1,400), while those who bear a third child will get 30,000 yuan.

The policy will take effect in June. Villagers who have already had their second or third child are not eligible to receive the subsidies.

Gu Quankai, Party chief and head of Bangdong village, said most of the villagers are very supportive of the plan, with more than 90 percent of them voting in favor of it during the village representative assembly held earlier this month.

"The policy aims to provide some benefits to the couples who give birth to more children and encourage young people in the village to have babies," he said.

Chen Zhuohong, deputy head of Bangdong, said the village expects to spend about 500,000 yuan annually to fund the subsidies. He anticipates that between eight and 10 additional babies will be born in the village each year as a result.

According to Chen, Bangdong, which has a population of 3,337 and more than 800 villagers of childbearing age, saw 30 babies born in 2023. Collectively, the villagers earned more than 58 million yuan last year.

"The problem of aging has become more severe in the village in recent years, as many young villagers have refused to give birth to children due to increased life and economic pressures," he said.

This has caused the village's birthrate to decline year by year, he said.

Chen said Bangdong used to see more than 40 new babies born annually from six to seven years ago.

"Now, young villagers are demanding a higher quality of life, and they don't want to put too much pressure on themselves, so the village committee decided to provide subsidies to encourage childbirth," he said. "We hope to give young couples some subsidies to reduce their economic pressure and encourage them to have more children in the coming months.

"A high birthrate can expand the population of the village and provide more talent for the village's future development," he added.

Dong Yuzheng, former president of the Guangdong Academy of Population Development and a special researcher at the Guangdong Provincial Advisory Office, said fertility rewards certainly have a certain positive significance.

"Especially for the young people who are hesitant to have children due to excessive economic pressure, the childbirth awards and subsidies can reduce their burden of childbirth and education and reduce their concerns about childbirth," Dong told China Daily.

Successful experiences in some countries and regions around the world have shown that through childbirth rewards and subsidies, the fertility rate can be effectively increased, said Dong, who is also president of the Guangdong Sociological Association.

"But fertility is not only a matter for young parents and their families, but also for society, as it is a complex and comprehensive behavior involving economic, social, resource and environmental factors," he said.


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